Developing Player and Organizational Buy-in

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About Course

Getting organizational buy-in is often difficult as a health or performance professional in esports. This article describes some strategies you can use to get players or management on board with your initiatives.

Instructor

 

Reid “x0tek” Johnson

Twitter | Liquipedia

Esports Coach

Reid “x0tek” Johnson began his esports career in 2003, playing in a World Cyber Games qualifier for Age of Mythology. While he was disqualified in this first event due to his young age, x0tek’s later career tells a different story. From turn based strategy games to tactical shooters, x0tek’s nearly 20 years as a competitor would bring multiple world and national titles across a variety of games. With the advent of the pandemic in 2020, x0tek took time away from competition to explore coaching. Since then, he has:

  • Coached the first Egyptian team to ever top an international esports professional league, Team Anubis, in CrossFire
  • Coached then-Australian juggernaut the Soniqs in Valorant, reaching top-ten in the North American rankings
  • Coached Cloud9 White’s game changers roster, winning a national championship and becoming the first all-womens team to break into the top 40 rankings of a major esport
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What Will You Learn?

  • Intro
  • Understanding Buy-In
  • Green vs Brown
  • Choosing your Battles
  • Gaining Momentum
  • Conclusion
  • TL:DR
  • Coaches Tips
  • Further Reading
  • Quiz

COURSE PREVIEW

Whether you are a new staff member within an organization, or an old head aiming to implement novel ideas, you will likely run into a simple problem.

How can you get people to buy-in?

In esports, this problem is magnified. There is resistance in many domains, with traditional sport practitioners dismissing esports as an endeavor. A recent study in the International Journal of Athletic Therapy and Training found that nearly 40% of athletic training staff viewed esports negatively. Trying to implement an injury-prevention program, or even a simple training regiment, can receive intense pushback.

Within professional esports teams, implementing change can remain difficult. Players tend to be recalcitrant, reluctant to change their own routines. Staff, too, can be stubborn, not wanting to invest in what they might feel is a waste of time. Even if a practitioner is integrated into the overall staff, it can be difficult to find the leverage for systemic or even behavioral shifts.

And yet, as player careers are often interrupted by injury, or burnout, these issues become more and more prevalent. Practitioners, coaches, and even players themselves can be left wondering how to get people to believe in the system. Players argue, and sport psychologists are left exasperated as their advice goes unheeded. Physiotherapists sigh in dismay, watching players grind for hours without stretching their hands.

“It’s difficult to overstate the enormity of this problem – it affects every organization independent of the industry we operate in, the size of our organization, whether we are profit or non-profit…how we integrate new ideas or technologies, how these are managed and performed predicts whether our organizations will win, or even survive.”

– Gene Kim, author of The Phoenix Project & DevOps handbook

Ultimately, every team is different. Each will have its own requirements, and its own ideal approach. In some cases, individuals will be given overt power and freedom from the organization. In others, individuals will have no authority whatsoever. Whatever the situation, buy-in will be key to truly implementing change on any systemic level.

The goal of this article is to describe a framework to better understand buy-in as a process, while providing practical advice that can apply across a number of organizations.

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Dr. Jennifer Thai

Nutrition

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The largest collection of gaming-specific health, fitness, and performance information on the internet, brought to you by the experts currently working in the industry with top-tier esport organizations.

Organizations that have benefited from the expertise of our authors include Cloud 9, Team Liquid, 100 Thieves, FNATIC, G2, TSM, and more.